The gaming industry just keeps. On. Growing. And shows no sign of slacking off! And while many pundits will point to the runaway success of the Wii as a key catalyst for this growth, some sales analysis by UBS' Ben Schachter shows that the driving force behind the industry's success is in fact music games. Particularly, Guitar Hero & Rock Band. According to Schachter's research, music games accounted for 19% of all gaming sales last month, and accounted for a crazy 44% of gaming's dollar growth over July 2007. Yeah, it's only one month, and yeah, they'll account for growth because they're expensive, but still. Don't rain on their parade! That's big money whichever way you look at it. Music Video Games Account for 32% of Industry Growth [GameDaily]
@freakout: Well the problem is no game exists in a vacuum. There is competition. Dance is also a pretty basic pleasure and people have been doing it basically since we were apes. But still, DDR's popularity has fallen dramatically over the past couple years, because the series just went as far as it could go and other games came out that people bought instead.
My earlier point was a little unclear, I think - I'm not saying I think music games as a whole are going to die out. What I'm saying is that these particular series - GH and Rock Band - will not necessarily be popular forever. And I do think the genre as a whole has reached sort of a plateau creatively already - how many games do we need with this same convention of the notes moving toward a target that you need to hit on time?
I think there are probably some different concepts you can still do with music games that haven't been thought of, something like Samba De Amigo did that was a little different. But probably nothing as universal or popular as playing guitar in a band or dancing.
Also, I mentioned snagging GH3 (for PS3) at Guitar Center for $29.99 - I think that's a sign. That is well below cost. Yeah, World Tour is coming, but not for a while, and GH3 is being cleared out at some stores. If its popularity was really continuing at the same pace, that wouldn't be necessary.